Two firms, D Four Metals and Plastona Limited, have entered into a joint venture agreement to establish a 3 million U.S. dollars ultra-modern smelting plant and refinery in Jos, Plateau.
They said the agreement was geared towards producing exportable products from Nigeria’s unprocessed abundant crude and raw natural resources.
According to the firms, their move was based on the Federal Government’s policy of adding value to products and services before exporting.
The Chief Executive Officer, Plastona Limited, Mr E. Collins, in a statement in Lagos on Tuesday, disclosed that the smelting and refinery plants were expected to commence operations in the 3rd quarter of 2019.
He said the smelting plant would have the capacity to produce 11,000 tons of lead ingots annually, a metal material required for further processing in steel production.
He added that setting up the facilities would create job opportunities for the nation’s youths and also generate foreign exchange via exports of its finished products.
He said Plastona with offices in Lagos and London, would deploy the latest blast furnace technology from China, where the company’s technical partners were based.
He pointed out that when completed and fully operational, the facility would help Nigeria save hard-earned foreign exchange.
The Chief Executive Officer, D four Metals, Mr Olusegun Oyalana, noted that the plants were expected to break even within 18 months after construction.
‘‘The project is in line with the federal government’s policy of adding value to minerals before export, thereby reducing capital flight.
“The output of the plant will be sold to international companies registered with the London metal exchange,” he said.
Oyalana also stated that the raw materials would be sourced from various local mines in Plateau, Gombe and Bauchi States.
He stated the need for Nigeria to develop her natural resources in order to drive economic growth and diversify the economy from oil to other sectors.
He called on the managers of the economy to develop friendly policies to attract both local and foreign investments into the nation’s solid minerals sector.